Editor’s note: Reza Gul was expected to be taken to Turkey for reconstructive surgery after her husband attacked her with a knife on January 19, 2016 in the remote northern province of Faryab, which borders Turkmenistan. 

Once again, in our land of horror, a young Afghan woman was beaten many times by her husband until she finally lost her nose when he attacked her with a knife.

Reza Gul is like an innocent bird, married for six years and now, at twenty, she is a mother in the Shar Shar village in the Ghormach district of Faryab province. Her husband attacked her and sliced off her nose. She was taken to hospital, while he fled to a nearby Taliban-dominated village.

Reza Gul endured violence so many times. At an age when another girl would still be studying at school, she suffered terrible abuse while raising a child without the help of a husband.

There are many female victims of violence in a similar situation in my country. The Human Rights Commission reported that violence against women in Afghanistan increased seven percent in a six-month period from late March to September 2015 compared with the same months a year earlier. Human Rights Commissioner Qadria Haq Parast said that in that period 2,579 cases of violence against women were documented. This included 190 murdered women.

Why are so many women facing violence in their homes? Why does the violence increase day by day despite all of the organizations and a women’s ministry who work against violence? Does the government pay attention? Is it a lack of security? Are the organizations not doing the work they should? These are questions for the authorities to answer.

I ask all men who commit these acts against women: Would you be able to tolerate the same pain you inflict on your wife or daughter? Can you live without your nose, ear, lips, or fingers? How dare you commit this violence against women? Do you think they are not humans? Even animals do not hurt their co-gender.

If you love your wife and daughter, you will feel the real happiness of life. If you respect them, they will worship you. Being a human being is not so difficult. You lose nothing by acting humane.

My innocent sister Reza Gul, you are not alone. I feel your pain with my body and soul. I wish I could have saved you from your husband but I promise to support your power if you raise your voice. Do not be quiet. Fight for your rights. We are with you. You deserve all the beautiful things in the world. I love you, my innocent bird!

By Afsana

Photo by Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission